Cry Baby

ImageI am a crier. My eyes leak at the least little things. A Hallmark commercial. A sappy chick flick. A student having a light-bulb moment. A romance novel. A child of mine napping. A full moon. A summer storm. A walk in the woods. A long conversation. A beautiful song. A friend in need. A family gathering. A powerful worship session. A moment of quiet.

Sometimes these unexpected pop-up tears catch me off guard, and most of the time I try to stop them, because when I cry I cannot speak. Not well anyway. I get all squeaky and my throat tightens up. I think that is why I prefer to write, I can cry and still get my point across…and my reader doesn’t have to see my makeup run, or my nose turn red.

I was not always this emotional, but somehow life experiences have tenderized my heart. I feel more. It’s no secret that I have always been a sentimental romantic, but that classification does not always produce tears. Most of the time that side of me causes my heart to feel warm and fuzzy. The tears started coming more frequently after Bill’s accident I think, but it wasn’t until my brush with cancer that the flow became a regular part of my life. Somehow everything became more beautiful. Little things I barely paid any attention to before, now take my breath away. I am so very grateful for more time that I cannot stop the tears from pooling in my eyes during these breathtaking moments. I’m not sure I ever thought the little things so spectacular before, but they are. Each one of them is a mini miracle.

I don’t think I have more of these moments than anyone else; I simply look for them now. I try to pay attention and find at least one each day. Some days that is easier than others, because some days I don’t really WANT to see something beautiful. (Just being honest.) Some days I would rather be caught up in my life activity than paying attention to how a caterpillar moves, or how the trees sound… but if I can slow myself down, and take a deep breath I am likely to find something exquisite right under my nose. Something I would have missed before cancer, or had no eyes to see.

Deep calls to deep. The depth of God calls to the depth of my heart and causes me to seek out those mysteries he has hidden around me. My definition of deep is different now. I find simple to be deep, and complex to be shallow. A red cardinal singing in my front yard moves my heart more than 100 sermons. Not that sermons are all bad…it’s just that I hear God’s voice everywhere now. ..singing to me on the wind, or shining on me with the warmth of the sun, through someone speaking his words, or holding my children in my arms. He is every place that I am. I try to remember that every day.

Even if I cannot speak, I won’t apologize for my tears, or the way my heart warms when I look at my children. Though it is sometimes embarrassing, I have found I can do both at the same time. Warm tears I call them. If they spill over sometimes and leave trails on my cheeks, I will not try to hold them back but let them express on the outside of me, my gratitude to God on the inside of me, for the most beautiful life.

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